South America Cruise - Guayaquil to Cartagena

Colombia · About Escorted or Guided Tour
G Adventures

Hoping to sail the turquoise waters of the Caribbean without going on a massive cruise ship? This 12-day South American cruise is just the ticket. Start your journey in Ecuador and sail to its secluded island: Isla de la Plata. Get inside the heart of the Darien Jungle and make meaningful connections with the Emberá tribe. Transit through the Panama Canal and sail towards the famed San Blas Islands. Finally, end this magical expedition in Cartagena, Colombia’s Caribbean coastal town. Uncover South America’s tropical beat aboard the G Expedition.

What's Included

10 nts aboard the G Expedition. Arrival and departure transfers. Isla de la Plata wildlife excursion. Darien Jungle and Emberá tribe visit. The Shaping of Panama and Miraflores Locks excursion. Transit the Panama Canal. San Blas Islands excursion. Excursion in Bahia Solano. Zodiac excursions with our expert expedition team. Lectures and educational programs on board. All transport to/from included activities and between all destinations.

Highlights

Sail the spectacular the South American coastline on the G Expedition, cruise through the Panama Canal, get up-close-and-personal with the Darien Jungle, relax on white-sand beaches, stroll through colonial Cartagena

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered. Aboard expedition trips visits to research stations depend on final permission.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Important Notes

1. Please note: While it is our intention of adhere to the route described above , there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. On the first day onboard, your Expedition Leader will give you an expedition overview.

2. Flight Information: When packing your luggage please note that the weight restriction on domestic flights within South America, is only 15 to 23 kg (33 to 50 lbs) per person, depending on the airline. Please note that the airlines will generally charge for excess baggage.

3. The G Expedition is an adventure Expedition ship and does not offer an elevator

4. The electricity onboard is 220AC electrical outlets, with European 2 pin round holes, as well as 110-volt shaving sockets in the bathroom for electric razors only. You may wish to bring an international adapter. A limited supply of electrical adapters are available to borrow free of charge at the Purser’s Desk.

Group Leader Description

A carefully chosen team will lead our voyage. Our expedition ships boast an international team of professional naturalists and lecturers. Their goal is to provide an informed and balanced interpretation of the destination, accomplished through stimulating lectures, day-to-day briefings, and informal discussions. Your lecturers and Expedition Leader will cover all aspects of the voyage including ornithology, marine biology, geography, geology, history and the environment, as well as practical things like photography. The expedition staff work conscientiously with you on deck and in the field, improving your observational skills to allow you to experience all that the destination has to offer. Their strong sense of ethics and ecological knowledge make for stimulating and mindful conversation whether onshore or at the dinner table. The Expedition Staff will pilot the Zodiac landing craft used for shore landings and Zodiac cruises; they are experienced drivers who operate the Zodiacs in a responsible manner.

Group Size Notes

Max 134 on board the G Expedition

Meals Included

11 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 10 dinners

Meals

Onboard our expedition ships you’ll find a diversity of gourmet international cuisines prepared and catered by professional chefs; all meals are included in the price of your expedition. Dining is casual, tables are unassigned and the dining room is capable of seating the entire passenger compliment at one time. There is always a selection of different meals available, and vegetarians will find plenty of options. Special dietary requirements can be accommodated with advance notice, please advise us at time of confirmation. Coffee, tea and water are all provided free of charge. All other beverages, alcoholic and non-alcoholic are not included and can be purchased in the dining room, pub or the lounge.

Transport

G Expedition, Zodiac, private bus, motorized canoe, walking.

Solo Travellers

We believe solo travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and solo travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Twin-share hotels (1 nt), aboard the G Expedition in quad-, triple-, twin-share cabins, or suites (all with en suite bathrooms and porthole or window) (10 nts). Please note that all cabins consist of twin-size berths and are ocean-facing. Suites have one queen-size bed.

My Own Room

Please note that if you have selected the Private Cabin option at the time of booking, you will receive your own room for the duration of this cruise. This includes the first night hotel.

If you are a solo traveller and you have NOT selected the Private Cabin option, you will be paired with another solo traveller for all nights, including the first night hotel.

For groups of 3 passengers travelling together who have booked a triple cabin, you will have a triple room in the hotel where available. If we cannot book a triple room, please note that one of you will be sharing with another solo traveller of the same gender for the hotel night.

Joining Hotel

For details of your joining hotel please refer to your tour voucher, G Account, the G Adventures App or contact your travel agent.

Joining Instructions

An arrival transfer is included in this tour if you arrive on Day 1, or when you arrive up to three days prior to the tour, provided that you have booked your pre-accommodation through G Adventures in our joining hotel. Due to customer experience and quality considerations, all services related to the tour must be continuous.

Please note that Day 1 is an arrival day and no activities have been planned other then the welcome meeting which takes place in the late afternoon/early evening. You may arrive at any time. Similarly the last day is a departure day in which no activities are planned.

A representative will be waiting at the airport to meet you holding a G Adventures sign with your name, directly in front of the arrivals section. There are often many people holding signs so we recommend to take some time to locate the rep with a G Adventures logo and sign with your name. If for any reason you are not met at the airport, you can go directly to the H.A.T.S. counter (Hotel and Airline Transportation Services) which is situated directly in front of the international arrival area, next to the taxi stand, and they will be able to assist you. In addition you may call our local support line at 0999 506 000. If you are unable to make contact for whatever reason, please make your way to the joining point hotel via taxi and report the issue to a G Adventures representative at the welcome meeting.

Arrival Complications

We don’t expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to arrive before embarkation time (usually 4pm) of Day 2 please use the emergency contact details in this dossier. We highly recommend arriving at least 1 day before sailing in order to make sure that delays do not ruin your trip as the ship is unable to wait for late passengers. If you are delayed in arriving to prebooked accommodations please contact the hotel to advise them when you will arrive. If you have pre-booked an airport transfer and have not made contact with our representative within 30 minutes of clearing customs and immigration, we recommend that you make your own way to the Starting Point hotel, following the Joining Instructions. Please apply to your booking agent on your return for a refund of the transfer cost if this occurs.

Emergency Contact

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Representative (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

AIRPORT TRANSFER
If you have purchased an arrival through G Adventures or if an arrival transfer is included in the cost of your tour, please note that:

Your arrival transfer has been arranged based on flight information provided to us. If you are advised of a flight schedule change within 48 hours of your scheduled arrival time, we will do our best to rearrange your arrival transfer however we cannot guarantee this. If your arrival transfer does not arrive within 30 minutes after you have exited the arrivals area please take a taxi to your start point hotel.

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office Quito, Ecuador
During office hours (Weekdays 9am-6pm Local Time)
From outside Ecuador: +593 2250 6610
From within Ecuador: 022 506 610

After hours Emergency number
From outside Ecuador: +593 999 506 000
From within Ecuador: 0999 506 000

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0344 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 0800 365 1000
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

What to Take

Most airlines allow one checked bag and two carry-on per person. To avoid any problems at check-in and with possible excess baggage charges, please consult the airline for specific restrictions. For storage on board the expedition ship soft compactible luggage makes storage much easier.

Dress on board is informal. Plan to bring comfortable, casual clothing for all activities. When packing, we suggest that you do not weigh yourself down with too many clothes or too much gear. Select informal, practical attire that can be worn in layers.

In the worlds most remote destinations that the G Expedition travels to we cannot offload our plastics, glass or tin waste for recycling. Therefore, we try to reduce what single use items that we use. You will see on the ship that every effort is being used to stop the use of single use plastic containers, bags and other items. In an effort to prevent plastic waste from entering the waste stream, we are asking for your help. We offer exceptional drinking water on the ship with refilling stations for your re-useable water containers. You will be provided a complimentary water bottle to fill up as needed. Plastic Items such as single use shampoo/conditioner plastic containers cannot be recycled, so please plan to bring any plastics back to your home countries for recycling. Please do not bring single use items that you intend to leave behind such plastic bags and throw away razors. Your participating in helping to prevent pollution and promote recycling is greatly appreciated.

Checklist

Documents:
• Flight info (required) (Printouts of e-tickets may be required at the border)
• Insurance info (required) (With photocopies)
• Passport (required) (With photocopies)
• Required visas or vaccination certificates (required) (With photocopies)
• Vouchers and pre-departure information (required)

Essentials:
• Binoculars (optional)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear
• Hat
• Locks for bags
• Long pants/jeans
• Moneybelt
• Outlet adapter
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Reusable water bottle
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Small travel towel
• Sunglasses
• Toiletries (Preferably biodegradable)
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Windproof rain jacket

Expedition:
• Binoculars (highly recommended)
• Camera (With extra memory cards and batteries)
• Cash, credit and debit cards
• Day pack (Used for daily excursions or short overnights)
• Drybag (To protect your camera and belongings on Zodiac landings)
• Ear plugs
• First-aid kit (should contain lip balm with sunscreen, sunscreen, whistle, Aspirin, Ibuprofen, bandaids/plasters, tape, anti-histamines, antibacterial gel/wipes, antiseptic cream, Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, water purification tablets or drops, insect repellent, sewing kit, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)
• Flashlight/torch (Headlamps are ideal)
• Fleece jacket or warm layer
• Fleece top/sweater
• Footwear (good gripping) (Please note that flip flops are not allowed while on deck of the Expedition.)
• Hat
• Long pants/jeans
• Moisturizer/lip balm
• Moneybelt
• Motion sickness tablets
• Outlet adapter (Electricity onboard is 220AC electrical outlets, with European 2 pin round holes, as well as 110-volt shaving sockets in the bathroom for electric razors only.)
• Personal entertainment (Reading and writing materials, cards, music player, etc.)
• Scarf
• Shirts/t-shirts
• Sleepwear
• Sunblock
• Sunglasses
• Swimwear
• Thermal base layer
• Thermal underwear
• Toiletries (Shampoo and shower gel are included aboard the Expedition.)
• Warm hat
• Warm waterproof gloves
• Watch and alarm clock
• Waterproof backpack cover
• Waterproof pants necessary (Mandatory for all Zodiac landings)
• Wool/Heavy socks

Note: Please note shampoo, conditioner and shower gel are provided on board.

Laundry

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. Aboard the G Expedition laundry facilities are provided at a nominal charge.

Visas and Entry Requirements

All countries require a valid passport (with a minimum 6 months validity). Contact your local embassy, or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. IT’S YOUR RESPONSIBILITY TO HAVE THE CORRECT TRAVEL DOCUMENTATION.

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an ‘emergency’ fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Tipping

Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. It is an expression of satisfaction with the persons who have assisted you on your expedition. The industry standard and suggested amount is USD $10 – 15 per person per day spent on board. Of course, tipping is a personal choice and the suggested amount is set only as a guideline. The money is collected by the Hotel Manager at the end of the voyage and distributed amongst the crew and Expedition Staff. The Officers choose not to participate in the tipping pool.

Optional Activities

North Pacific Ocean
- Expedition Lecture Program (South America)

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government’s advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers’ cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewelery at home – you won’t need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your group leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it deemed necessary, due to safety concerns. Your Chief Experience Officer (CEO) will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy and explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards), have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk. Read more about travel safety for ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling.

Trip Specific Safety

We recommend that you wear minimal jewelry and that you keep valuable items safely stored in our complimentary safety deposit box, which is located at the Purser’s Desk.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our group leader has the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your leader, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy we require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency evacuation and repatriation. A minimum coverage of USD200,000 is required. G Adventures can provide you with the appropriate coverage. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. Some tours include adventure activities that require extra coverage (e.g. crampon use); please review your itinerary and make sure that you are covered for all included activities. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

The Planeterra Foundation planeterra.org is a Canadian non-profit organization that helps empower local people to develop their communities, conserve their cultures, and create humane and supportive systems for their endeavours. Planeterra provides capacity building and catalyst grants to get community social enterprises off the ground. These businesses address local challenges by providing benefits for indigenous people, empowering marginalized women, and granting disadvantaged youth access to education, employment, and brighter futures. Planeterra also works to ensure these businesses have a thriving customer base by integrating programs into G Adventures’ itineraries globally.

G Adventures is Planeterra’s largest corporate donor, covering all operating costs so 100% of your donation will bring opportunity to people in need.

Dollar-a-Day Program
G Adventures’ Dollar-a-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar for every day you are on trip. 100% of these donations go directly to support community development projects worldwide that are implemented by Planeterra.

Newsletter

Our adventure travel e-newsletter is full of travel news, trip information, interesting stories and contests. To avoid missing out on special offers and updates from G Adventures, subscribe at www.gadventures.com/newsletters/

Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra’s monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Minimum Age

Minimum age of 10 years for this trip.

Keeping in Touch on the G Expedition

While you are on board the G Expedition, we know that keeping in touch with your family and friends is important to you. We want to ensure you have the tools available to keep you connected in some of the most remote regions of the world. We have a satellite system, which allows our travellers to connect to the internet or make phone calls with the purchase of personal data credit. Travellers may use our computer room or use any Wi-Fi enabled device to connect to our network, which is available in public areas on Decks 4 and 5. Satellite phone service is available and private calls can be made from our phone booth. Due to using a satellite connection and travelling in remote regions, internet can be slow and sometimes unavailable. The connection in the high Arctic is particularly challenging and no connection is available while in and around South Georgia Island.

International Flights

Check-in times and baggage allowances/restrictions vary by airline and can change at any time. For the most up-to-date information for your flight, please contact your airline. We recommend checking in online in advance to avoid potential delays at the airport.

Group Leader

One Expedition team member per 10 guests.

PRODUCT_LINE: XVGCSX, ID: 23550

Itinerary

Day 1: Guayaquil

Arrival transfer included.

Transport:
Private Vehicle

Day 2: Guayaquil/Salinas (1B, 1L, 1D)

Hop on a morning transfer to the port of Salinas. En route, visit a cocoa hacienda for an included lunch before transferring to the ship for a 4pm embarkation.

Transport:
Private Vehicle
G Expedition

Day 3: Isla de La Plata (1B, 1L, 1D)

Head out on a full-day wildlife tour to experience the best of Isla de la Plata. Similar to the Galápagos, prepare to see blue- and red-footed boobies, Peruvian pelicans, frigatebirds and waved albatrosses. Explore more of the area on easy hikes.

Included Activities:
Isla de la Plata Excursion

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 4: North Pacific Ocean (1B, 1L, 1D)

Enjoy the on board lecture program with this day at sea.

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 5: Bahía Solano (1B, 1L, 1D)

The G Expedition will dock in Bahia Solano just after lunch. Pick one of the four included excursions. Options include hikes through the jungle to see waterfalls, visits to a nearby fishing village, or free time to wander the town and relax on gorgeous beaches.

Included Activities:
Playa Mecana – Botanical Garden Excursion
Chocolatal Waterfall Excursion
Huina Fishing Village Excursion
Playa de los Deseos Excursion

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 6: Punta Alegre/Darien Jungle Reserve (1B, 1L, 1D)

Leave the ship in Punta Alegre for the day and transfer to a motorized canoe to journey into the lives of the Emberá Indian Tribe nestled in the pristine Darien Jungle. Navigate up the Mogue River to this community of the indigenous people of the area. Wander the village and get to know your hosts. Enjoy a presentation of traditional dances.

Included Activities:
Darien Jungle and Emberá Tribe Visit

Transport:
G Expedition
Motorized canoe (0.75 hour(s))

Day 7: Pearl Islands (1B, 1L, 1D)

With over 200 islands, the Pearl Islands offer world-class beaches and postcard perfect landscapes. Explore this remote area, taking advantage of included snorkelling gear. Take the Zodiacs to stunning snorkelling areas, beautiful beaches or opt to spend time in the sleepy town.

Included Activities:
Beach Barbecue (Pearl Islands)

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 8: Panama City (1B, 1L, 1D)

The G Expedition will reach the Panama Canal with the opportunity to explore this marvel of engineering before the transit through the canal begins tomorrow. Enjoy an included visit to the Miraflores Locks Observation Center to learn more. Walk through the old French Quarter of Panama City to the coast, learning about the history of the area along the way.

Included Activities:
The Shaping of Panama and Miraflores Locks Excursion

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 9: Panama Canal (1B, 1L, 1D)

With an understanding of the history of the canal and how it works, see it all first hand as the Expedition navigates her way through the canal. Enjoy your first views of the Caribbean when you reach the other side.

Included Activities:
Panama Canal Transit

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 10: San Blas Islands (1B, 1L, 1D)

Arrive on the San Blas Islands – full of white-sand beaches, palm trees, and crystal-clear blue waters. Spend this free day relaxing on the beach or snorkelling and swimming. Enjoy a visit to a local market and a small town to learn more about the life of the local Kuna Indians.

Included Activities:
San Blas Islands Excursion

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 11: Capurganá (1B, 1L, 1D)

This seldom visited area is a gem in the Caribbean. Take part in excursions to visit the locals, walk through the jungle and enjoy a traditional meal with your new native friends. Enjoy an included walk through the Eco Reserve El Cielo.

Included Activities:
Capurganá Excursion

Transport:
G Expedition

Day 12: Cartagena (1B)

Arrive in colonial Cartagena. Catch a departure transfer to a centrally located hotel where the tour ends on arrival.

Included Activities:
Departure Day

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